“The Popular Game: Soccer!” Essay
“The Popular Game: Soccer! ” Soccer is the most watched sport on television worldwide.
This explains why players such as David Beckham, who plays for Los Angeles Galaxy earns approximately $46 million annually while Cristiano Ronaldo earns approximately $42 million annually. Soccer, which is also known as football, is played using a circular ball between two teams. Each of these teams has eleven players including the goalkeeper. The game which is currently the most popular game in the world is played by approximately 250 million players in more than 200 countries.The objective of the game is to score a goal against the opponents, without any of the players being on the offside. Soccer is played on a field that is rectangular with grass or in the modern fields, artificial turf, which is safer and with a better visual impression.
FIFA (International Federation of Association Football) governs Soccer internationally and also makes arrangements for world cup which is played after every four years. The players should wear a full uniform: short, shirt, footwear, socks and shin guards. Items such as chains and watches are forbidden as they can cause harm (Eugenio, 142).The rule of the game allows the field players to use any part of their body except the hands.
The goalkeepers are the only ones allowed to touch the ball, if it is not a throw-in which can be done by any player. Goalkeepers are also supposed to wear a different uniform so that they can easily be identified. The winner of a game is the team that scores the most goals after a period of ninety minutes. If there is a tie, the winner is decided by having extra time and/or penalties.
There are two halves and each lasts 45 minutes and fifteen minutes break before the second half starts.The official timekeeper of the game is the referee and he/she can add time to compensate stoppages such as attending to injured players, substitutions, among others. The added time is usually known as injury time or stoppage time. There are two states of the ball during the game; ball out of play and ball in play and this is according to the Soccer laws. Some of the common terms used in soccer are goal kick: when the attacking team’s player is the last to touch a ball that crosses goal line and the defending team is given the ball.
Kick-off: to start each half or after a goal is scored.Corner kick: given to the attacking team when the defending team is the last to touch a ball that crosses the goal line. Throw-in: given to team that did not lastly touch the ball that crossed the touchline. Dropped-ball: the referee stops the ball for reasons such as interference, serious injury or a defective ball. Direct free kick: awarded once a ‘penal’ foul is done by the opposing team and can lead to a goal. Indirect free kick: awarded once a ‘non-penal’ foul is done by the opposing team such as changing a player and another player should touch the ball so as to score.
Penalty kick: similar to a direct free kick but the foul must have been done in the penalty area. History of football dates way back. People started kicking ball in different places as long as the eighth century in places such as England. Other places include Cuju in China and Woggabaliri in Australia.
The public schools of England used to play different types of football and that is the reason why the modern rules of soccer tried to standardize the varying forms. In 1848, the first rules known as the Cambridge Rules were set in the Cambridge University and these contributed a lot in the codes that followed.The Cambridge rules were written in presence of representatives from schools such as Shrewsbury, Rugby, Eton and Winchester meaning that only a small portion of the world was represented. Clubs that were not connected to these schools were formed during the 1850’s and they came up with their own different rules. In 1857, Sheffield Football Club was created and after ten years this later led to Sheffield FA (Harvey, 126).
The Football Association (The FA) was formed in 1863 to cater for all the efforts in Soccer.This meeting was conducted in Freemason’s Tavern in London and the only school that was represented in the meeting was Charterhouse. The venue was used between October to December to host five more meetings and this lead to the very first complete set of rules. The Blackhealth representative who was also the FA treasurer opposed the removal of two rules in the last meeting and he was supported by clubs such as the English rugby football and they refused to join the FA and created their own Union called the Rugby Football.
In 1886, International Football Association Board (IFAB) was formed and it controls the laws of the game.This board was formed by a meeting of different associations such as the Irish Football Association and the Scottish Football association. Alcock founded the FA Cup, which is the earliest football competition comprising of English teams and they have competed since 1872. Scotland and England were the first teams to play an official international football match in the year 1872 in Glasgow. In 1904, the football body called FIFA was formed and swore to follow the Soccer’s Laws of the game.
FIFA was admitted to International Football Association Board due to public demand in 1913.Laws of the game also specify that only three players can be substituted in each game in both international and domestic league but this can change in friendly matches. Substitutions may be carried due to different reasons: tactical switch, injury, tiredness or even to waste time. A player that has already been substituted can no longer take part in a match.
According to IFAB recommendations, a match should not go on if each individual team has less than seven players. The points awarded to any abandoned game are decided by individual associations (Brian, 6). There are benefits that are brought about by soccer.These include physical, social mental and even spiritual.
Soccer induces zeal and plays a major part in fans’ lives across the world. This is the reason why soccer is considered a favorite pastime. People who play soccer, especially young people, have friends, are social and they have less conflicts with their parents since they have a constructive way of passing their free time. It helps the players have respect for other people, which they learn during their games due to penalization. Outside the soccer field, players get support and recognition due to the popularity of the game.Soccer helps improve agility and building the muscles which eventually increases stamina.
It is also a good aerobic exercise which help the heart work normally even under pressure and strain. It also helps reduce body fat as it easily burns calories and tones the body at the same time. Soccer has also brought countries together socially and has helped promote peace and tranquility worldwide. The major event that has made this happen is the world cup. Spain are the current champions of the world cup having won in the year 2010.
World cup is played after every four years and this was initiated in the year 1930.Since then then it is only in 1942 and 1946 that it has not been played due the world war. There is a period called the qualification phase, where many teams play against each other and only 32 teams qualify for the world cup. The event lasts for about a month being held in one country. Brazil has kept a record of having won five cups and they have also participated in all the events; this could be the reason why they are hosting the 2014 world cup. Research has shown that world cup is the most popular event in the world.
The final match of the 2010 world cup that was held in Germany attracted 715. million viewers. This signifies that millions of people come together irrespective of race or language to support their teams. Soccer improves a person’s concentration as it is 10% physical and 90% mental. Self-discipline is achieved as players are required to follow rules of the game and they become accustomed such that they follow these rules even outside the field. The game helps players to meet new people as teams can be invited to other areas or even countries, this also helps people understand different cultures and languages.
The sport is a good way of decreasing anxiety and when someone gets to understand it properly, the self-esteem and confidence are increased. Friends can easily spend their time together while playing the game since it does not require a lot of equipment (Dunning, 103). The civil war that was in Cote d’Ivoire in 2006 was reduced in 2007 when the national football team played against the rebel forces in Bouake. The event brought both armies together and this helped reduce the tension in the country. Soccer is currently considered the most popular game all over the world.
This is the reason why there are soccer academies such as Dartmouth academy and Empire United Soccer academy, where young players learn football as a profession. This has been a great source of income with the players laughing all the way to the banks with their millions. Soccer players have been named by Forbes among the top income earners around the world. It educates on the significance of working as a team through cooperation and communication to achieve a common goal. Players on a team must work under the supervision of a coach and a captain so as to be able to conquer problems and learn the skills of solving specific problems.It ensures that players think as a team and not for personal benefits and this ensures that these actions and thinking methods are carried to places of work and the homes as well.
Works cited Brian Wingate. Soccer: Rules, Tips, Strategy, And Safety. New York: Rosen publishing group. 20007. Print pg 6 Dunning, Eric.
Sport Matters: Sociological Studies of Sport, Violence and Civilization. London: Routledge. 1999. Print.
p. 103. Eugenio, Romedio. Soccer: Attacking Schemes and Training Exercises. Spring city: Data reproductions.
1998. Print. 142 Harvey, Adrian (2005). Football, the first hundred years. London: Routledge.
Print. p. 126.